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How Can My Prescription Medication Affect My Oral Health?

How Can My Prescription Medication Affect My Oral Health?

Posted on Thursday, May 6th, 2021 at 4:32 pm.

While medications help treat many health conditions, some of them have a negative impact on your oral health. Make sure you let your trusted team at May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry know about any medications you are taking, including vitamins or herbal supplements.

Here are some of the most common complications resulting from the use of some prescription drugs.

Dry Mouth

Saliva protects the health of your teeth and gums. It flushes away food debris, reduces the amount of harmful bacteria, neutralizes acids in the mouth, and helps remineralize and repair teeth damaged by acid attacks. Dry mouth is an unfortunate side effect of numerous medications, including painkillers, antihistamines, decongestants, high blood pressure medications, and more. It can lead to a host of oral health problems, including gum disease, increased oral bacteria, cavities, bad breath, loose teeth, and in some cases, tooth loss.

If you have a dry mouth, drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and chew sugar-free gum to promote saliva flow. Dr. May may recommend artificial saliva to help alleviate your symptoms.

Tooth Decay and Cavities

Numerous medications contain sugar, which promotes tooth decay and cavities. If possible, switch to a sugar-free alternative or tablet form. Otherwise, take your medicine while eating and brush regularly with fluoride toothpaste. Make sure to visit May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry for your routine preventive exams and cleanings to keep your teeth in tip-top shape.

Other Complications of Prescription Drugs

If you experience any of the following complications, make sure to talk to your healthcare provider about switching medications if possible. Dr. May will outline your treatment options to alleviate your discomfort and relieve your symptoms:

  • Enlarged Gums: Immunosuppressants, anti-seizure medications, and calcium channel blockers often cause an overgrowth of gum tissue around the teeth, a condition known as gingival hyperplasia.
  • Mouth Ulcers, Inflammation, and Soft Tissue Discoloration: These can occur due to numerous drugs, including oral contraceptives, immunosuppressants, blood pressure medication, and some chemotherapy medications.
  • Oral Yeast Infection (Thrush): This fungal infection is characterized by white lesions on the mouth or tongue and is often a side effect of antibiotics, steroids, and some chemotherapy medications.
  • Teeth and Gum Discoloration: Antibiotics such as Minocycline or gum disease drugs such as Chlorhexidine can cause black staining and discoloration on the gums and teeth.
  • Abnormal Bleeding: Blood thinners can lead to abnormal bleeding, so you will need to let us know if you are on these medications to minimize your risk of bleeding during dental procedures.
  • Altered Taste: Some medications such as cardiovascular drugs, ADD and ADHD medications, and nicotine patches can result in an unpleasant bitter or metallic taste in the mouth.
  • Bone Loss: Medications such as corticosteroids can damage the bone supporting your teeth, and bisphosphonates used to treat osteoporosis can, in rare cases, damage the jawbone.

Quality Dental Care in Valencia, CA

If you are experiencing side effects of prescription drugs, your trusted team at May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry is here to help. We will work with you to alleviate your symptoms and restore your healthy smile. You can always count on us for exceptional, gentle care!

Is Periodontal Disease Reversible?

Is Periodontal Disease Reversible?

Posted on Friday, April 9th, 2021 at 10:29 pm.

Periodontal (gum) disease is a progressive condition that develops so slowly that most patients don’t notice it before it advances to periodontitis, the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. The good news is that visiting May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry for your routine dental exams and cleanings will allow for the prevention, early detection, treatment, and management of gum disease. We are all about maintaining a lifetime of healthy smiles.

How Does Periodontal Disease Develop?

Dental plaque, a sticky film of bacteria that continuously forms on the teeth, is the leading cause of periodontal disease. If not removed, plaque hardens into tartar, irritating the gum tissue and causing inflammation, a condition known as gingivitis. If not treated, ongoing gum inflammation can progress to periodontitis, characterized by the gums pulling away from the teeth, leaving spaces called pockets that fill up with plaque, tartar, and bacteria.

With time, the pockets deepen, and the infection results in the destruction and loss of the bone and connective tissue supporting the teeth, ultimately leading to tooth loss. Moreover, chronic gum inflammation has been linked to serious health conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and more.

Is Gum Disease Reversible?

Whether or not gum disease is reversible depends on how far along the condition has progressed. In the earliest stage, known as gingivitis, meticulous oral hygiene practices and professional treatment usually reverse the condition. However, if the gum disease has advanced to periodontitis, it is not reversible. If that’s the case, we will discuss your treatment options to prevent further damage to your gums, teeth, and bone.

Treating and Managing Gum Disease

The most effective gum disease treatment is a non-surgical deep cleaning known as scaling and root planing. Scaling involves cleaning off plaque and tartar from above and below your gum line. Root planing, on the other hand, involves cleaning and smoothing out your teeth’s root surfaces to discourage tartar and bacteria buildup and promote the healing and reattachment of your gum tissue to your tooth surfaces.

In some cases involving advanced periodontal disease, scaling and root planing may not be sufficient to treat and manage the condition. We will discuss your treatment options and may recommend periodontal surgery.

What Is Periodontal Maintenance?

After scaling and root planing, you will need to schedule more frequent visits to our office, typically every three months, for periodontal maintenance. During your appointments, we will clean your teeth, evaluate your gum health, and measure the depth of pockets. The goal of these follow-up visits is to halt the progression of gum disease and to maintain the health of your gums and bone.

Periodontal Disease Treatment in Valencia, CA

Visit May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry to learn more about prevention and treatment of gum disease. We are all about maintaining our valued patients’ long-term healthy smiles. Call us and schedule your appointment today.

How Can Vaping Affect My Oral Health?

How Can Vaping Affect My Oral Health?

Posted on Friday, March 5th, 2021 at 5:56 pm.

Smoking is detrimental to your oral health. It significantly increases the risk of oral cancer, gum disease, and bad breath, and even stains your teeth. So is vaping any better? New research demonstrates that vaping may be just as bad for your smile as smoking traditional cigarettes. Learn more about this harmful habit and its impact on your oral health.

What Is Vaping?

Vaping involves the use of an electronic device called an e-cigarette that heats a liquid and releases an aerosol a user inhales. The misconception that the aerosol is harmless water vapor cannot be further from the truth. Aside from nicotine, ultra-fine particles of heavy metals and toxic chemicals can wreak havoc on your oral and overall health!

How Does Vaping Impact Your Oral Health?

E-liquids containing nicotine pose a risk to your oral health. The chemical acts as a muscle stimulant, increasing the risk of tooth grinding (bruxism), which leads to tooth wear and oral health complications. It also stains teeth, causes bad breath, alters the blood flow to the gums, impacts cell function, decreases tissue turnover, and increases the severity of gum disease, leaving the user at risk of tooth loss.

The harms of vaping don’t stop here. When used orally, propylene glycol, a main ingredient in e-liquids, breaks down into acids that damage the tooth enamel and propionaldehyde, which irritates the soft tissues. Moreover, it increases the risk of dry mouth, a condition known as xerostomia, potentially leading to tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath.

Another ingredient, vegetable glycerin, is a slightly sticky liquid sweetener that helps bacteria cling to grooves onto the chewing surfaces of a vaper’s teeth. Moreover, when mixed with flavorings, the combination allows bacteria to flourish and significantly increases biofilm growth while decreasing the hardness of the tooth enamel.

Vapers need to realize that this so-called “healthy alternative” to smoking is not healthy at all. It’s just as harmful and creates the perfect conditions for rampant decay, gum infections, and tooth loss!

Caring for Your Teeth and Gums

We at May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry urge our valued patients to refrain from vaping. However, if you vape, it’s important to care for your oral health. Make sure you brush with fluoride toothpaste and floss regularly. Also, make sure to drink after vaping to combat dry mouth. Most importantly, don’t forget to schedule your routine dental exams and cleanings to allow us to monitor your oral health and treat any dental problems as they develop.

Quality Preventive Care in Valencia, CA

Visit May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry to learn more about the impact of vaping on your oral health. We are proud to provide quality preventive services to support your oral health every step of the way. Call us and schedule your appointment today!

What Is Laser Dentistry?

What Is Laser Dentistry?

Posted on Thursday, February 4th, 2021 at 7:27 pm.

At May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry, we are committed to utilizing the latest dental technology, and one way we do that is by investing in groundbreaking dental lasers. Our award-winning Waterlase and Epic lasers by Biolase offer gentle care, shorter recovery times, and improved treatment outcomes.

Biolase Waterlase Laser Dentistry

Waterlase utilizes patented technology that combines water, air, and laser energy for exceptionally precise and gentle care, all with no shots, drills, or anxiety. The innovative erbium laser helps perform a range of dental procedures with less pain, less trauma to the gums and teeth, and faster healing time.

What Conditions Can Waterlase Laser Dentistry Treat?

Our revolutionary Waterlase laser helps treat a range of conditions, including the following:

  • Cavities: Waterlase repairs tooth decay without a drill, usually eliminating the need for anesthetics. It also reduces bacteria at the cavity site, allowing for better treatment outcomes.
  • Periodontal (Gum) Disease: Waterlase eliminates harmful bacteria between the teeth and gums, lowering the risk of gum inflammation, bleeding, and recession, as well as tooth loss.
  • Oral Growths: Waterlase quickly and effectively removes growths or excess tissue in the mouth, including gum tissue over unerupted teeth and small growths called papilla or fibromas.
  • Contouring Gums: Waterlase can effectively contour or shape the gums to improve the appearance of a “gummy” smile.
  • Tongue Ties: Waterlase is a game-changer when it comes to frenectomies for tongue ties, making the procedure less traumatic and faster-healing.

Biolase Epic Laser Dentistry

Epic by Biolaise combines multiple dental instruments into one. This innovative product is FDA approved and is the only diode laser dentistry tool that can perform different therapies using the same unit. The Epic laser requires less anesthesia before performing a treatment and allows for less downtime.

What Conditions Can Epic Laser Dentistry Treat?

Epic performs the following main tasks using three different settings:

  • Soft Tissue: This setting performs soft tissue surgery and treats ulcers and lesions in the mouth. It also decontaminates bacteria during routine dental cleanings and deep cleanings (scaling and root planing). That helps manage periodontal disease, reduces gum pockets, and preserves the bone and tissue supporting the teeth.
  • Pain Management: The Epic diode laser’s pain therapy feature provides relief at the source for patients suffering from chronic oral pain conditions, including temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD).
  • Teeth Whitening: The whitening headpiece helps whiten and brightens teeth 4-6 shades in just 20 minutes! The Epic laser cuts the appointment time of traditional in-office whitening methods in half.

Laser Dentistry in Valencia, CA

We invite you to visit May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry to learn more about Biolase’s revolutionary dental lasers and what they can do for you. We look forward to providing you with the exceptional care you deserve. Call us and schedule your appointment today.

Do I Need To See an Orthodontist To Straighten My Smile With Invisalign?

Do I Need To See an Orthodontist To Straighten My Smile With Invisalign?

Posted on Monday, January 4th, 2021 at 7:21 pm.

Choosing to straighten your teeth with Invisalign is the best decision you’ll ever make for your smile. With proven results and a virtually invisible appearance, your Invisalign aligners will perfect your smile without impacting your life!

Do You Need to See an Orthodontist for Invisalign?

You may be wondering if you should visit an orthodontist for your life-changing treatment. The answer lies in experience, not specialty. Your trusted team at May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry has extensive training, skill, and expertise in transforming smiles with Invisalign. You can always trust us for results that exceed your expectations.

What Is Invisalign and How Does It Work?

Invisalign, brought to you by Align Technology, is the world’s most advanced clear aligner system. Your invisible braces, made from digital scans of your mouth, will shift your teeth gently and precisely into their desired position. You will need to wear your custom aligners for 20-22 hours each day for the best results. As you move on from one aligner set to the next, about every two weeks, you’ll begin to see your gradual smile transformation. After you achieve your desired results, you’ll need to wear retainers to ensure your teeth don’t shift back out of alignment.

What Are the Advantages of Invisalign?

Invisalign offers many benefits. The clear aligner system comes to you with over 20 years of clinical research and over 700 patents. The virtually invisible aligners will have you on your way to your ideal smile up to 50 percent faster than traditional braces, all without anyone having to know. The smooth and gentle aligner material offers unparalleled comfort while shifting your teeth into alignment with precision. Moreover, Invisalign Teen features compliance indicators to ensure sufficient usage.

Invisalign’s SmartForce features and SmartTrack material make it efficient for treating complex cases with predictable results. The innovative invisible braces effectively correct gapped, crowded, and crooked teeth, as well as overbites, underbites, open bites, and crossbites. Invisalign not only enhances your smile but also promotes your oral health. Clear aligner therapy corrects the alignment of your teeth and problems with your bite, reducing your risk of tooth decay, cavities, and periodontal (gum) disease.

Invisalign will perfect your smile without interfering with your life. You can remove your aligners to clean your teeth, eat whatever you please, and engage in sports activities. When done, pop them right back and let them continue to work their magic. Invisalign’s incredible results speak for themselves. You’ll love your beautifully straight teeth and stunning smile!

Invisalign Invisible Braces in Valencia, CA

Visit May Conte D.D.S. Cosmetic, Implant, and Family Dentistry to learn more about transforming your smile with Invisalign. Our team is committed to utilizing the latest technology and techniques to deliver real, long-lasting results. Are you ready to smile your best? Call us and schedule your appointment today!